Posts Tagged thanksgiving recipe

Cranberry Sauce with Juniper and Orange

When it comes to Thanksgiving, I’m a total traditionalist. I don’t stray far from the classics, and I stick with what I know and love. My Thanksgiving table usually includes the following items: a turkey, mashed potatoes, gravy, sweet potatoes, stuffing, Brussels sprouts and/or green beans, cranberry sauce, my Grandma’s rolls, and a green salad. I wasn’t lying when I said I’m a traditionalist. This is a very typical Thanksgiving spread.

Granted, that doesn’t mean that I do the things the same way every year. On the contrary, I’m always looking to improve and update the Thanksgiving classics. While I insist that there must be cranberry sauce on the table every Thanksgiving, I don’t want the same old cranberry sauce every single year. So, I try to switch things up a bit every year.

This year, I decided to can my own cranberry sauce. I adore cranberry sauce and am often frustrated by the fact that you can only find it in stores during the holidays. If given the option, I would probably eat a turkey cranberry sandwich for lunch every day of the year. I also love cranberry sauce when it’s baked with brie cheese and wrapped in puff pastry. I love cranberry hand pies. You get the idea…

So, I decided to make a big batch of cranberry sauce to last me through the winter. I tried out a few different cranberry sauces this year and I eventually settled on this recipe. It’s lovely. The Juniper berries give the sauce a really interesting hint of fresh, green pine. The orange juice adds balance and brightness. And, the honey and brown sugar combine to round out the sauce and give it just the right amount of sweetness. (Note: This cranberry sauce is quite tart, but you could easily up the sugar levels depending on your taste and preference.)

Whatever your holiday traditions may be, I’d encourage you to include this cranberry sauce on your Thanksgiving table this year. I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised.

Lastly, tune in this Sunday, November 24th, to KPAM 860 for Missy Maki’s Ultimate Oregon Thanksgiving Show! I’ll be on air – along with a group of fantastic food bloggers – and we’ll be talking about our Ultimate Oregon Thanksgiving recipes. It’s going to be a blast, so be sure to listen in!

Happy (almost) Thanksgiving!

Cranberry Sauce with Orange and Juniper | Rosemarried

Cranberry Sauce with Juniper and Orange

Serving Size: 6 pints


  • 12 cups fresh organic cranberries
  • 3 cups orange juice
  • 1 cup red wine
  • 2 tablespoons dried juniper berries
  • 3 sprigs fresh rosemary
  • The zest of 1 orange
  • 3/4 cup honey
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar


  1. Wash and sterilize jars and lids and prepare a hot water bath for canning.
  2. With a mortar and pestle, crush and grind the dried Juniper berries.
  3. In a large pot, cook 10 cups of cranberries (reserve 2 cups for later), orange juice, wine, rosemary, and orange zest. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, uncovered, for 15 minutes.
  4. Add in most of the honey and brown sugar, and stir. Taste the sauce and add the rest of the honey and sugar, if needed. (I found that even with the honey and brown sugar, the sauce is still quite tart.) Add additional juniper, rosemary, or orange juice if necessary.
  5. Simmer until sauce thickens and reaches desired consistency, stirring occasionally. (15+ minutes)
  6. Once the sauce has thickened to your liking, add the remaining 2 cups of cranberries. Raise the heat and bring the mixture to a boil. Stir occasionally and cook for 5 minutes.
  7. Fill hot, sterilized jars with the cranberry sauce, leaving 1/4″ of head space. Remove air bubbles, wipe down the rims of the jars, and place lids and rings on each jar. Process in a boiling water bath for 15 minutes.


Adapted from Local Kitchen Blog

Sautéed Sweet Potatoes with Whiskey, Brown Sugar, Cayenne and Rosemary

I absolutely hated sweet potatoes when I was a kid. Or, at least I thought I did. Really, I think I was misinformed about sweet potatoes. My only real experience with sweet potatoes was with the famed Thanksgiving side, “Sweet Potato Casserole”. You know the dish I’m talking about, right? The bright orange casserole, which was usually made with canned sweet potatoes and was topped with some sort of marshmallowy substance. The whole thing was devoid of texture and sickeningly sweet. (I apologize if I’m stepping on any toes here, I do know that there are many out there who love this classic Thanksgiving dish. I’m just not one of them!)

This is what I knew of sweet potatoes, and I did not like it one bit.

But then I grew up and figured out that sweet potatoes are awesome. They’re a surprisingly versatile little root vegetable, and can be used in various sweet or savory applications. In addition, they’re classified as a “superfood“. I’m not entirely sure what that means, but I’d like to pretend it means that sweet potato fries aren’t bad for you. Fried superfood is still a superfood, right?

But, I digress.

The point is, sweet potatoes are fantastic. I could eat them a million different ways; in pies, biscuits, soups, stews, gratins, and more. But of all the ways to enjoy sweet potatoes, there is one recipe that is my clear favorite. I like to sauté them with butter, whiskey, rosemary, shallots, brown sugar, and cayenne. Just take a moment and let your eyes wander back over that sentence. Yep. There are a lot of good things in that sentence. And when you combine all of those good things with sweet potatoes, it’s downright magical.

Bulleit Rye | Rosemarried

The potatoes are buttery, salty, sweet, and a little bit spicy. The whiskey and the brown sugar work together to give the sweet potatoes beautiful brown, caramelized edges. (I’m making myself hungry as I type this. Seriously.)

And the best part about these potatoes? They’re really, really easy to make. And, you can do a lot of the prep work ahead of time. If you boil your sweet potatoes a day ahead of time, they only take 10 more minutes to cook. TEN MINUTES. I used to over-complicate the holidays and make ridiculous dishes that required me to slave over the stove all day. I’ve since learned my lesson, and I try to relax and actually enjoy the holidays. That’s one of the reasons I love this recipe, it allows me to do just that.

All of that to say, these sweet potatoes will be making an appearance on my Thanksgiving table this year. And who knows, maybe they’ll end up on your table as well. :)

(P.S. In the spirit of “Thankful November” I would like to mention that today, I’m thankful for the company of a good book and a snuggly cat. Oh, and I’m thankful to have a working heater. It is COLD out there!)

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Sautéed Sweet Potatoes with Whiskey, Brown Sugar, Cayenne and Rosemary
Serves 4-6

4-5 medium (red flesh) sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch cubes
2 small shallots, diced
3 sprigs fresh rosemary, chopped finely
2 tablespoons salted butter
2 tablespoons whiskey
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 tablespoon brown sugar
Salt & pepper, to taste

This step can be done ahead of time: Place sweet potato cubes in a medium size pot and cover with water. Add a dash of salt, and place over high heat. Allow the water to come to a boil, and then reduce heat and allow the potatoes to simmer until soft (20 minutes or so). Drain water, set potatoes aside. If you do make the potatoes ahead of time, store them in the fridge in a sealed container until you need them.

In a large non-stick skillet, melt butter over medium-high heat. Add shallots, and cook for 2-3 minutes, until translucent. Add in sweet potatoes, and gently stir to coat with butter. Allow to cook for 2-3 more minutes. Sprinkle cayenne, brown sugar, rosemary, salt and pepper over the potatoes while they cook. Be careful not to over-stir, so that they potatoes retain their shape (and don’t get mushy. You want them to remain in cubed form!). Turn the heat up to high, and deglaze the pan with half of the whiskey. Allow the sweet potatoes to caramelize. Once slightly browned on one side, turn the potatoes over (or give a quick stir) and sprinkle with more brown sugar. Add in the rest of the whiskey, and cook until potatoes have caramelized and have light to medium browning. If the potatoes begin to stick at any point, add in more butter.

Taste, and adjust seasonings if needed. I like them to pack a punch, so I use more cayenne than indicated. Sprinkle a bit more fresh rosemary over the top of the potatoes and serve immediately. If you really want the potatoes to pack a bit of a punch, drizzle just a touch more whiskey over the top of the potatoes before serving.

Spiced Cranberry and Pear Compote

This time of year is just so lovely. I am a sucker for all that the Fall brings: the cold weather, the pumpkin goodies, the colorful leaves, and gigantic holiday meals. But beyond that, this is a time of celebration, of thankfulness, and of family. I think my specific love for the Thanksgiving holiday originated during the years I lived far away from my family. No matter how crazy life got or how distant I may have felt, Thanksgiving was the light at the end of the tunnel: it held the promise of seeing my family. It didn’t matter where my parents lived or what city we celebrated Thanksgiving in, somehow it always felt like home. Candyce would spend hours drawing woodland creatures on Thanksgiving placecards, Danielle and my dad would argue over watching the Macy’s parade vs. watching football, while my mom and I would race about the kitchen to get dinner on the table.

These days, Thanksgiving looks a little bit different. I now live in the same city as my parents (and both of my sisters), and I see them all the time. Thanksgiving is no longer an escape from my crazy life; rather, it is a celebration of all that my life has become! My life is really wonderful, and my family seems to be getting larger by the day. In the last couple of years I have gained a (wonderful) husband, an (adorable) niece, two brothers (in-law), and two sets of in-laws. I have a lot to be thankful for.

That being said, for any remaining posts from now until Thanksgiving, I want to share one thing I am thankful for. Tis the season, right? And if you couldn’t tell from everything I just wrote, the first thing I want to say that I am thankful for is my ever-growing family. I am a very lucky gal, to be surrounded by so much love. (Oh, and this is the part where I am supposed to post a recipe, right? I’m getting to it, I promise! Sometimes a gal just needs to let her true colors show. I’m just feeling a little sentimental today. :) )

As for this recipe, it is a simple and elegant twist on the classic Thanksgiving Cranberry Sauce. Over the years, I’ve made many variations of cranberry sauce (compotes, chutneys, etc.) Cranberry sauce is delicious in many forms, and thus I try to switch it up every year. I will admit, this is one of the best cranberry sauces I’ve made to date. It is the perfect blend of winter fruits and flavors, it is low in sugar, and is made from whole fresh fruit. And, this cranberry sauce makes the perfect turkey cranberry sandwich. Let’s be honest: cranberry sauce isn’t so much a Thanksgiving dinner necessity as it is a leftover turkey sandwich necessity. For me, nothing beats the a turkey cranberry sandwich the day after Thanksgiving.

So, if you’re looking for a twist on the ole cranberry sauce, I highly suggest you give this one a try. (And did I mention how stinking easy it is to make? And that you can make it ahead of time and freeze it? Yes, this recipe is a winner.)

Spiced Cranberry and Pear Compote

1 12 oz. bag fresh cranberries (3 cups)
1 ripe pear, peeled and diced
2 sticks cinnamon bark
1/4 cup water
1/4 – 1/2 cup brown or muscovado sugar
Zest of one orange
5-6 whole cloves (or 1/4 tsp ground cloves)
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
Place the cranberries, water, and sugar in a small pot over medium heat. As the water and cranberry mixture heats up, stir occasionally (you’ll hear the cranberries start to pop). As the cranberries break down, the mixture will thicken.

Once the mixture starts to thicken (5+ minutes), add in pears, cinnamon, orange zest, nutmeg and cloves. Reduce the heat and allow the mixture to simmer gently until it reaches the desired consistency (another 5-10 minutes).

Allow to cool before serving or freezing. Be sure to remove whole cloves or cinnamon sticks before consumption!

This compote pairs well with a variety of meats, its fantastic on a turkey sandwich, and it is wonderful on its own (by the spoonful). With a little extra sugar added into the recipe, this also worked really nicely as a filling for mini hand pies (like these mini turnovers I made a while back).